tv Morning Joe MSNBC December 9, 2010 6:00am-9:00am EST
number one on msnbc, unfortunate error, bank errors leading to foreclosures and ask you at the top of the hour what are you doing awake? our unbelievable has a couple o couple answers. >> jerry writes my chihuahua wakes me up every morning to relieve himself and watches you as he goes back to sleep. >> glad i can be of service. >> jan writes i'm up way too early to ask willie if he realizes how much he looks like a young orson wells. >> the weird thing is, i'm always smoking a pipe outside the show. "morning joe" starts right now.
if i work all my life and i pay my taxes on my income and i die and i want to pass on what would be great if it were a $5 million estate to my kids, why should i pay the government again. >> you aren't paying anything in that case because you'll be dead. >> the estate is and that's less for my children. >> the only question is -- look. >> answer my question. how is that fair? >> meagan, you're going to have to let me answer the question. we're going to have a conversation. >> tell me how is it fair? >> ready? >> i am. >> the question is how much this adds to our debt. it adds an enormous amount. no one can be in favor of that and come on your show and say i'm so concerned about the debt. >> welcome to "morning joe." i guess that clip showed, in part, why democrats don't really want to debate the issue of taxes because i think americans -- mike barnicle, i think americans are on the side
of the republicans on a lot of these issues. they think it's immoral to work hard their entire life, scratch and claw and then end up getting giving 50% of their money for the government. >> the estate tax is a loser. it's not a big revenue producer in and of itself. i think when people think about the taxes, they obviously want their taxes cut, but they're also wondering how the republicans who go around complaining about the size of the deficit in passing programs as they did for eight, nine years when george w. bush was president, that they'll pay it for the programs. >> it's a great question. by the way, it's thursday, december 9th. i'm in houston this morning with willie back in new york. we have msnbc political analyst harold ford junior. of course, you've already seen mike barnicle and our own orson
wells. >> harold ford, this is a losing battle, harold, is it not, for the democratic party? you go on -- meagan kelly asks a question that so many republicans and so many people have asked -- this ain't about robber barons making billions of dollars. for a lot of americans, they boil it down to, hey, i pay taxes my whole life, i work my tail off. and then when i die the federal government wants me to pay 50% to washington, d.c. no. i'm working my whole life to pass something on to my kids. when anthony says, well, you won't pay taxes because you're dead anyway, i guess he's not a parent yet so he doesn't understand. >> you're spot on. two things. democrats have no reason to be upset about this deal. democrats -- my party, we got everything we wanted, extension of unemployment benefits, payroll tax cut -- i can accept the 2 point reduction. the middle class tax. the only thing that was added is
that the continuation of the cuts for the highest earners is included for two years. anthony weiner and other liberals have argued that's going to raise the debt. the biggest debt increase is the most important part of this which is the continuation of the middle class cuts because it's such a large group of people we're talking about. the extension of the cuts for the highest earners as well as the estate tax reduction really are smuch smaller. the estate tax piece is so much smaller and the impact is not nearly as great. i watched yesterday and i felt somewhat bad for anthony is because he had no good answer. there's no good answer to that. >> there is no good answer. >> let's get into a broader tax reform bill next year. >> and you certainly know when anthony has no problem, he goes ross perot on this and says, i can answer the question? let me answer the question. there is no good answer. there is no moral reason, mike barnicle, why people should work hard their entire life, scratch
and claw pay collect to paycheck, start earning money, maybe in their 50s, start putting money away, in their 60s it accumulates if they make a wise investment. then when they die they think the american dream, i'm leaving but my kids are going to be better off than i am. i mean that's why we work, right? you are not working for yourself now. to be honest, i'm not either. you worry as a parent how are my kids going to do when i'm gone. >> joe, when you're as economically illiterate as i am and you find out about things like the estate tax and what will happen once you die, you become enraged because of exactly that factor, thinking i'm doing all this, i'm working -- still working, working some more in order to take care of my kids when i die. joe, by the way, you are in carl crawford's hometown this morning, houston, texas and he's
coming the the boston red sox. >> i'm telling you, these red sox guys must have a summer home in houston, texas, because they have struck oil. they're buying soccer teams in england. willie, how much money -- these are my type of owners. unless of course they're owners for the new york yankees. how much have our boston red sox paid out over the past couple days, willie? >> about $300 million. 142 to crawford and i believe 154 to adrian gonzalez. as i told barnicle early, you read red sox fans have lost the right to complain. >> kind of ugly interparty fighting among the democratic party in washington, d.c. take us through it. >> senate democratic leaders moving forward with a vote on the tax deal despite something of a rebellion. harry reid says he hopes to bring the measure to the floor
today or tomorrow, a sign he thinks he's close to having the 60 votes he needs to advance the measure. despite that, democrats in both chambers still fuming about the package. as you heard mr. weiner accusing the administration of giving the nation's highest earners a break on income and estate taxes. as a result the white house has launched a campaign-style rollout of the campaign supporters. many are mayors and governors who don't have a vote. yesterday the president predicted many more on his party would climb on board. >> it's inaccurate to characterize democrats at large as feeling quote, unquote, betrayed. i think democrats are looking at this bill and you've had a whole bunch of them who said this makes sense. i think the more they look at it, the more of them will say this makes sense. >> after stressing that not passing a deal would cost the u.s. economy nearly a million jobs, the president then put the onus on republicans.
>> republicans are going to have to explain to the american people how making the tax cuts on the high end permanent squares with their desire to start reducing deficits and debt. i don't think that formula works. they'll have the opportunity to make the case. >> joe, he did strike a deal to make that formula work. >> le struck the deal. he's the guy who decided on the timing of the deal. mike barnicle, does somebody need to inform the president that it's not the republican whose are going to be explaining this over the next two years, it's the president of the united states who decided to cave on the issue of giving millionaires tax cuts. >> on the timing of the tax cuts, joe, and their future expiration, he'll have to be explaining it, defending it, fighting for it to repeal it again during the course of his re-election campaign. that is going to be interesting to watch. >> harold, i was going to say to you really quickly, and then go ahead, one of the things you've got to say about this, i was critical politically as a news
analyst saying a democratic president should never give up so much so quickly because bill clinton wouldn't. but economically, let's turn to the economics of this, i mean just about every economist this side of paul krugman is saying this will help stimulate the economy over the next two years. for the white house that has to be job number one. >> 9.8% unemployment rate. if the president in this plan is able to achieve over the three to six months a minimum of a quarter percentage point drop in unemployment rate, maybe we drop by .1% by next month, another tenth of a percent over the next month or to, a lot of this criticism from the anthony weiners of the world will diminish. anything over $5 million dollars of the estate tax will be taxed at 35%. no one is suggesting you give millionaires a free ride. over the course of a period -- over the course of your life if
you accumulate assets above $5 million you'll pay a 35% tax. finally, with regard to what the president just said about blaming the republicans and democrats, what democrats and republicans ought to be rallying around now is something you've been talking about on this show and others as well. how do you reduce the long-term debt. there are two types of debt here. one, the debt accumulated to try to get us out of this crisis that we face. and, two, the debt we're accumulating because of entitlement spending. the deficit commission laid out a very good template. that's where the next set of energy ought to be rallying around. >> i love this. this is washington, d.c. they say they worked forever coming up with a plan to shave $4 trillion off the national debt over a generation. that's tough. made tougher because after they do their report they go home for the weekend. washington convenes for the weekend, strike a deal that adds another trillion dollars in one weekend to the national debt. that's bad. willie, as far as optics go, it
gets no worse for barack obama with his democratic base than a headline that we saw from cbs news last night. unbelievable. >> this isn't going to help. there's a rhee port out, joe, that says the tax cut deal would actually slightly increase taxes for the poorest americans. the nonpartisan tax policy center compared the impact of the "make work pay" credit which expires under the deal to be payroll tax cuts that is in the plan, and that study says the payroll tax cut will on average put more money into the hands of more americans. the more an individual makes, the larger the tax relief will be. those on the bottom rung of the income ladder are at a disadvantage. individuals making under $20,000 a year or households making under $40,000 would receive more money from the "make work pay" credit since the 2% payroll tax cut would amount to less than $400 or $800. >> mike barnicle, the big
headline is -- a lot of details there. we'll get a screen graph from cbs news, their website. the headline is "obama tax plan raises taxes on the poor." that ain't going to get them on their feet at the democratic convention in 2012. >> joe, there's no country other than perhaps sweden that provides more care, more help for people in economic difficulty. $40,000 a year is certainly economic difficulty for a family of two or three. $20,000, it's catastrophic for you. so the idea that they're focusing on this, that this is a reason to vote against the tax bill is truly absurd. in addition, joe, they should eliminate the payroll tax for people earning under $50. if anthony weiner and other democrats are concerned about the impact for hiring americans, high-earning americans, which i understand that concern.
offer an amendment to eliminate the payroll tax for those earning under $50,000 a year. the other issue, you've got to figure out how you let this thing grow. as others mentioned, you still have to address the housing issue as well. >> new polls here. a new bloomberg poll shows majority of americans don't support the republican position of extending tax cuts for the nation's highest earners which became the president's position. 59% favor eliminating the cuts wheel 38% oppose. 48% believe it should be for those who earn more than $250,000. 28% says though making half a million should taxed more. and 23% favor an increase for people making more than $1 million. >> mike barnicle, i was talking before about the cbs news headline. look at this headline. the optics of it, again, for this white house absolutely
horrible. "obama tax cut plan would increase taxes for the poor." warren buffett gets his taxes cut, while gates gets his taxes cut and while, most importantly, carl crawford gets his taxes cut. so mike barnicle, he can buy a home in your neighborhood when he comes to boston. >> well, you know, trying to portray the president as bob crachett because of one element of the bill is absurd. as harold pointed out, the bill is going to go before the floor. it's going to be amended. this can be addressed in multiple ways. we afford numerous opportunities. the government affords numerous opportunities for people whose families are in critical economic conditions. let's pass this thing, try and lower the unemployment rate. get more people back to work and let's start moving in this country. >> all right. happy days are here again willie geist. willie, i saw a clip of that
oprah interview where she's crying. >> talking about gayle. >> and saying what i hear you do all the time. willie will go up to these people and go, i'm not even half lesbian. i don't know what the context of oprah's remarks were, are you going to play those for snus. >> the frustrating part for me is no one believed me. they accused me of being half lesbian. we'll explain this shortly for the viewers that have no idea what we're talking about the. >> i think you're full on, full on lesbian. there's no doubt about it. oprah is crying and talking about being a half lesbian. barbara, only barbara walters can get somebody crying saying, read my lips, i am not a half lesbian. >> we'll play the clip a little later. up next, your business on the go headlines. also mike allen explains why so republicans are now having
second thoughts about that ban on earmarks. that's in the politico playbook. plus after an embarrassment on monday night football, jets coach rex ryan digs deep quite literally to motivate his team by taking them to a funeral. it's not as bad as it sounds. first bill karins with a check of the forecast. >> willie, i still don't know how he does it either because the ground is frozen. you'll have more on that coming up. let's talk about this cold outbreak. syracuse, new york, four days in a row of heavy snow. we've gotten about 30 to 40 inches of snow in syracuse. cleveland and buffalo about a foot. a little coating fell in new jersey last night. be careful if you're driving in central and northern jersey. here is the windchill, five, six, 14, you get it. another very cold day. at least the sun will be out in most cases. temperatures will only be in the mid 30s. the cold air still down to the south, in atlanta, 17 for your windchill. high today of 45. a storm system is coming this weekend. it looks like thursday and friday are just fine. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
how dare you steve martin. when they see an advertisement for steve martin with deborah solomon who is an art historian, they expect a discussion of "the pink panther." it's complicated, and "sergeant bilco." how many times do i get to stay it. artists do not evolve. he needs to stop being a jerk and be "the jerk". let's take a look at the morning papers t. "houston
chronicle," nasa takes a giant leap away from the space flight business. yesterday for the first time, a private company launched its own rocket from cape canaveral, florida. this as nasa phases out its fleets of space shuttles. end of an era, willie. >> "wall street journal," mark zumer burg among 16 billionaires pledging to give the majority of their wealth to charity. the "st. petersburg times," for the kids, head coach of florida gators, earvin myers resigning saying this time it's about being a better father. he's walking away from about $20 million. an unexpected surge in the ebook business, romance novels. good news for us, joe. we're working on that together. the fastest growing segment of the market. one theory, it's less embarrassing to buy them online than it is to go into a bookstore. that's an actually theory. i didn't make that up. >> willie, that's bad news for
us because i have, as you know, i am an artist of those harl kin romances. i'm working the harms to figure out a new way to get the sunlight gleaming off those ripped biceps. online it's not going to be the same. >> your rippling abc are on the cover of most of them. you make a lot of money that way. >> most of them. business on the go. nicole lapin is at cnbc headquarters. good morning. bonds take it on the chin, huh, second worst two day sell-often since lehman. >> willie, the bond story is the story. guess who called it? mr. dow joe slash fabio. it will continue today. even though he's in houston. it's going to be the talk of traders in wall street. closely watching the 30-year option. we saw the worst day since the
lehman collapse. the ten-year was at its highest level since june. theoretically if you open up the old dusty textbooks you will see rising yields from bonds selling is good for the markets. why? it's bullish. >> bullish, nicole. a lot of this is tied to the debt, what's going on with china. >> that's the other thing. bullish if you're looking at an economic outlook being better, so people are saying, o karks risk is on, we're going to look to stocks. on the flip side, the china factor. also the idea that rising fields will basically make it harder for governments to borrow money which would not only fuel inflation, willie, but it would be essentially hurting the economic recovery globally. >> nicole, we're getting weekly jobless claims out. what are we expecting? >> of course, the ever-important weekly jobless claims. we're also looking the the idea that typically the bond market gives us a good warning sign for the stock market. but so far it's had a mind of its own really. stocks were higher yesterday. we're going to be watching
particularly financials today. banks were left out. they're back in the game. >> joe called it all again. romance novels, a wall street -- >> multi-talented man. >> nicole lapin, thanks so much. >> it's not easy. it's not easy. willie, you can tell -- there's a great responsibility there, nicole. thank you so much for being with us. and now we go over to politico. >> chief white house correspondent for politico is mike allen with a look at the morning playbook. >> good morning to all of you at "morning fabio." >> you guys saying republicans thinking twice about supporting a ban on earmarks, something much talked about lately. what's going on? >> willie, this is one of my favorite stories in the four years of politico. house republicans love talking about banning earmarks. now they're starting to think, whoa, how am i going to get money form a highway, for a water project? they're now saying, wait, maybe
we went too far. they're saying let's redefine earmarks, let's exempt our favorite ones. joe will tell you that these are member-directed spending, not earmarks, right? just as what we would call a vacation, they call a distribute work period. so they say member directed spending should be okay if a state or local government is part way funding it. so a loophole in you're marks. >> harold, what's the bottom line on earmarks? are they important to keep them out of budgets? >> at the end of the day, they have very little impact because it's such a small as mike and i talked a few weeks ago and joe mentioned as well. but the president, this is another optics moment. democrats ought to offer this and say, we have frozen federal pay for the next three years and we're going to save $30 billion. we challenge republicans, the president ought to do it, pelosi and hoyer ought to do it, reid and durbin and schumer, we challenge you all to ban them for the next year and force
republicans to either step up and honor the tea party pledges that were made during the campaigns or cause them to some political consternation. freeze pay raises for federal workers and ban earmarks, pork for members of congress. the fair thing to do. >> put pressure on the republicans, too. >> it's daunting on republicans that what lobbyists have been saying is correct, if you ban earmarks and pull that out of the process, this gives more control to the executive branch. then you have to lobby them to do it in their budget. >> mike allen, thanks. you guy haves a good piece. i'll get to you about the possibility of a primary against president obama in 2012. >> no primary, anthony weiner. >> you ruined it. i was teasing people to go look at your site. coming up, would you quit your day job if you got called up to play in the nfl a railroad conductor got the offer to leave the train and go to the nfl. did he take it though?
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welcome back to "morning joe." new york city as the sun comes up. we're here in new york city, me, barnicle, harold ford. joe is in houston this morning. let's do a little news. sarah palin says supporters of the whistle blowing website wikileaks have hacked her personal information and the website of her political action committee. in an e-mail to nbc news, the former alaskan governor weighed in on julian assange saying no wonder others are keeping silent about assange's antics. this is what happens when he's exposed and you exercise your first amendment rights and speak out about the sick espionage efforts. claiming they shut down websites of visa and mastercard. as of last night the group made no mention of targeting palin on
dwiter or facebook. wikileaks payment processor says it's preparing to sue visa and mastercard over their refusal to process donations to the website. new reports says the lockerbie bomber has slipped into a coma and is on life support and not expected to recover. sources close to the family said the 58-year-old who has terminal prostate cancer has been unable to talk for several weeks. the news comes 16 months after the only man convicted in the 1988 pan am bombing was released on compassionate grounds because the doctor gave him three months to live. >> he can't talk because kadafi has a noose around his neck. the guy is an embarrassment, right? and beverly hills police believe they've solved the killing of ronni chasen. authorities believe she was gunned down in a robbery gone wrong by the convicted felon who killed himself last week as cops
tried to question him. police say the man likely shot chasen while riding a bicycle and sped off before stealing any of her things. >> that makes no sense at all. >> that got resolved pretty quickly, didn't it? >> she's driving down the street and she gets shot four times in the chest in her car? >> yeah. >> there are -- i'm not an expert at such things. i would guess there are more efficient ways to rob somebody than shooting them in a moving vehicle. i'm just saying. >> i think she was stopped at a light joe momentarily. apparently that's when he tried to rob her. >> mike, don't give me details. don't give me details. it just clutters things up for us. >> joe is a big picture guy. >> okay. live with your own theory. let's do a little sports. what we've been talking about all morning. the boston red sox, the boston red sox violated all of their core principles -- >> no, no.
>> agreeing according to reports to a contract with all-star outfielder carl crawford, a deal for seven years worth $142 million. add that to the $154 million contract for infielder first baseman adrian gonzalez, the red sox now have spent nearly $300 million in the last few days, mike. congratulations. >> that's about what the yankees paid for mariano rivera, the bullpener. we're still trying to catch up to the yankees. >> we're the little engine who could. >> so will you promise, you'll never whine about the yankees buying championships. >> i have never whined about that. i have not whined about that. >> what? that's the basis of all red sox argument is that the yankees buy championships. >> not my argument. >> give us another day or two. we have a guy we're looking at. >> here is what harold is talking about.
yet the gm of the yankees confirmed the team has made an offer to cliff lee, the top pitcher in free agency. sources tell espn the offer was in the ball park of -- six years, $140 million. >> there you go again, trying to buy a championship. >> joe is exactly right. >> is he going to go to washington? where is washington getting all the money, jayson werth, cliff lee. >> the united states treasury. they go across the street and add to the deficit. >> a bailout package. >> let's talk jork jets, huge loss on monday night, 45-3 to the patriots. getting over it. yesterday jets corner back darrelle revis explained rex ryan's unusual method for helping the players cope with defeat. >> in the morning he made us get out -- we had a team meeting this morning and he buried a football in the ground and said
just forget about m thegame. he said we're burying this game and what happened monday night and moving forward. >> in actual dirt on the field? >> yes, on the field. >> rex ryan held a buerhle service. it called it a funeral for the game ball. degree a hole, buried it and said we're moving on. >> willie, that's great. it is just one game. as you and i -- look, think back, all the times in football history where a team got beaten badly, then came back. of course, you have the words of tim tebow inscribed on your wall. remember when he lost to ole miss? remember what he said? >> yes. >> nobody will ever work as hard as me or something like that. >> yeah, he did. >> it's just one game. the jets can win it. >> they're 9-3.
they'll be fine. they'll get the wildcard. >> what did he put in with the ball? did he also put his super bowl hopes in there, too? those are gone as well. >> the new york bashing continues. >> stop it. come on. go jets. speaking of the jets, would you quit your day job for a chance to play in the nfl even if it was on the practice squad? not this man. he wouldn't do. 24-year-old keith fitzhugh declined an offer to join the team after injuries left the jets with only two healthy safeties. described as a journeyman free agent, fitzhugh was cut from the jets squad earlier this season. so what's the job back home he's taking over? he is a train conductor. train con doctor. but in fairness, the job was only on the practice squad, no guarantee he'd be around at the end of the year. he said i need steady work, i'm staying with the company. good for him. >> very good for him. bless his heart. big story out of great britain recently. last month british billionaire
and formula one racing ceo bernie ecclestone was a victim of mugging. he's 80 years old. thieves beat him up, took his cash and a watch worth nearly $300,000. how did ecclestone respond to this attack? he made cash. he appeared as the spokesman in this ad for that brand of watch. this is him right after, beaten up and bruised. the caption says see what people will do for a hublot. off getting his fanny whipped out on the streets. british billionaire making some cash. >> lewis comes in to work looking like that a lot. do you think he can make some money. >> we don't ask too many questions about what happens to lewis. a lot of dark alleys in this city. house majority leader steny hoyer joins us. also d.c. mayor adrian fenty,
congressman ally gentleman cummings and we'll be right back with this morning's must-read opinion pages. if you live for performance, upgrade to castrol edge advanced synthetic oil. with eight times better wear protection than mobil 1. castrol edge. it's more than just oil. it's liquid engineering. we know diamonds. together we'll make her holiday. that's why only zales is the diamond store. where you'll get an extra 10% off storewide now thru sunday.
we've got to pull together and focus on what's important for america and then roll up our sleeves and fix the things that need fixing. this is the greatest nation on earth, the shining city on the hill, as ronald reagan called it. and i believe as bill clinton said, that there's nothing wrong with america that can't be cured by what's right with america. >> welcome back to "morning joe." that's new york mayor michael bloomberg yesterday delivering a speech that was report by "the
washington post" as striking out against both extremes and reaching for the middle of american politics. welcome back to "morning joe." let's go to mika's must-read op eds. we start with jon meacham. "new york times," no deficit of courage. it's too soon to tell what will confront mr. obama. if this bill, with its middle class tax benefits stimulates the economy, then his compromise on the liberal article of faith may one day rank with mr. bush's courage under conservative fire. there are worse things than losing re-election yet winning the good opinion of history. don't be surprised if mr. obama makes that very point when he presents the presidential medals of freedom next year. among those, the presidents he has chosen to honor at the white house, a man from houston, george herbert walker bush. mike barnicle, obviously george bush in 1990, 1991 made a very
difficult decision to go back on a campaign pledge and raise taxes. some economists say that helped begin america's recovery. could the same thing happen on the other side with barack obama crossing his party's base and actually extending tax cuts to all americans? >> we're going to find that out, joe. clearly they made the decision to go toward the middle. the white house made the decision to move toward the middle because of the economy and to accept these tax cuts and we'll see if the same thing happens as happened in 1991, '92 when the economy spurted upward and helped bill clinton at the expense of george herbert walker bush's presidency. >> and harold ford, we've talked a lot about the politics of this with the democratic party. it was a courageous move for the president to make. some would say in the center. but let's just talk the economics of it. do you agree with mike barnicle this bill needs to be passed because it will be good, a good
way to get americans back to work? >> i do. i think in an intermediate term, it's a very smart thing to do for all the reason that is have been stated. remember, from a political standpoint, again, the only thing democrats had to add that they didn't want was extending the tax rates for the top earners for the top two years. they got everything else they wanted including a payroll tax cut. two is the debt commission. to find some way you can rally support around a framework that works. there's ways to fix parts of this bill that they don't like. you have an amendment process. you and i both remember how that works. democrats remember, still maintain majorities, large majorities in both the house and the senate at least for the next few weeks. >> we played part of that interview, harold, with anthony weiner at the top of the show talking to meagan kelly on fox. she made the president's argument to the left which was i did the best i could, i had to get something done. what else did you want me to do? anthony weiner's response was, i wanted you to fight.
ronald reagan had situations where he was fashioning majorities on the other side and he got the votes. he went out an clawed them and put it together. >> ronald reagan compromised. government works when people compromise. anyone whether you're liberal, conservative, moderate, democrat or republican, a automatic sesful president is defined on whether government works. people didn't go out and want republicans, they wanted the government to work again. he needs to make more and more, louder and louder. hopefully democrats in the house and the senate, as they try to bring around recalcitrant democrats -- >> the complaint of the left is they didn't fight hard enough. >> we lost 60-plus seats in the house. there's an election you can't overlook, backdrop that is impending. if he hadn't done it now, a worse set of circumstances, if not a worse deal might have emerged come january or february. he did fight. we fought in the elections and voters spoke. they want washington to work. i applaud the president for
taking the huge step in that direction. >> joe, you know what's interesting, if you look at it from one particular point of view, you're easily led to the view that the democrats who have been talking now for a year, year and a half about republicans not wanting to do anything other than obstruct, the democrats in the last two days off of the revelations of the bill sound as if they are the ones who don't want to make a deal. >> they don't want to make a deal, but they don't want to make a deal on tax cuts for people earning over $250,000 for the same reason republicans didn't want to make a deal on the stimulus package in january of 2009. there were so many things in that stimulus bill that were so objectionable to small government conservatives that i thought it was laughable that republicans were attacked for not voting. why would republicans vote for a bill as bad as that stimulus package? likewise, if you're a democrat, if you're an fdr democrat, a
kennedy democrat, an lbj democrat, why would you vote at this time to extend tax cuts to people making a million or more dollars? there is no good reason why. i think it's very understandable. as i said, i understand why republicans, why conservatives voted against the stimulus package just like i understand why democrats would vote against this bill because it does violence to their most basic beliefs about what government should and shouldn't do. >> joe, i disagree with you a bit on that. >> okay. the one thing really quickly, though, that we have to all admit is that this, while it will get the economy turned around, and we need to turn the economy around to get people back to work, this puts us another trillion dollars in debt. when we're already $14 trillion in debt. it is an extension of the recklessness of the bush years, the recklessness of the first two years of the obama years. we've gone from being $5
trillion in debt when bush came into office to being $14 trillion in debt. this will easily take us to $15 trillion or $16 trillion in debt. by the end, where does the money come from? it comes from china. when we come back, the interview question from barbara walters that brought oprah to tears. and president obama takes a break from taxes to appear on "mythbusters" last night. we'll show you why he did that. [ male announcer ] humana and walmart are teaming up
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oh yes, i'm here and it is time. >> oh, mika is in the house. hello, mika. >> yes. is it time? >> it is time. time for "news you can't use." >> why is barnicle slobbering there? i hear barnicle slobbering in the background. >> he's very excited about this oprah story. let's get to it. willie, a talk of half lesbianism is something we need to address at 6:50 in the morning. >> i had not heard of half lesbianism until last night.
oprah winfrey speaking with barbara walters. a preview of an hour-long interview that runs to night. here is barbara asking about oprah's good friend and ours, ms. gayle king. >> a lot of women have close friends, very few have friends as close as yours. >> uh-huh. >> describe that friendship to me. >> ooh. okay. she is the friend that everybody deserves. i don't know a better person. i don't know a better person. shoot. i wasn't going to cry here. it's making me cry because i'm thinking about how much i probably have never told her that. tissue, please. i now need tissue. >> i'm not lesbian. i'm not even kind of lesbian. and the reason why it irritates
me is because it means that somebody must think i'm lying. >> there you go. to be with the lesbian nonsense. they're friends. >> that is frustrating. leave them alone. >> she said she's not even kind of lesbian. so why are you bringing it up? get over it everybody. stop that. >> she couldn't have been more clear. >> she could not have been more clear. not even half. >> willie, move on. president obama is a busy man these days. >> i don't know a better person. that's what i say about willie -- >> partly because he's appearing on discovery channel's "myth busters," a show where these two guys test science myths, like does mentos explode in a coke bottle? what would a bull really do in a china shop. president obama explaining why he went on the show. >> i'm a big fan of "myth
busters." i am and so are the girls. we are fascinated by science. you make it fun and exciting on interesting and occasionally you blow things up which is always cool. >> that is always cool. >> the president actually gave the two hosts an assignment to reinvestigate the myth of archimedes solar ray. >> is that in any relation to ray charles? >> no, sure isn't. the greek mathematicians idea that sending heat from the sun would help them defeat the romans. let's do another story -- >> hold on. you know why he did that? a lot of people, why the president did that? he did that because of his daughters. come on. he wanted to be cool, we all do that occasionally. they don't care he's president of the united states. if he's on "mythbusters," trust me, i got kids. that's big. >> it's huge. it's a good show. >> it is a good show. good news for walmart customers. some wine vending machines. that's right wine vending
machines. wine kiosks at this local pittsburgh area grocery store. the walmart in pittsburgh answered that by installing the wind vending machines. yellow tail, barefoot, sutter home. you have to take a breathalyzer apparently after you do that before you get brack in your car. that's actually happening. up next, mayor adrian fenty and the mayor of nothing, john heilemann next on "morning joe."
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it's tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers unless the hostage gets harmed. i was not willing to see them get harmed. >> so you would not negotiate with hostage takers unless they threatened to harm the hostages. threatening the hostages is the only arrow in the hostage taker quifer. mr. president, we will give us what we want or the hostages get ice cream. >> yeah. welcome back to "morning joe," live shot of new york city as the sun comes up this morning. we're live in houston today.
no sun yet. >> houston, texas. >> home of carl crawford, future boston red sock. >> i love the red sox. >> you have no idea who carl crawford is. >> larry is so smart bringing in good players. >> he called barnicle yesterday. can i tell the story? >> sure. go ahead. >> so la keen know calls barnicle at 5:00 in the afternoon and says i've got news for you, but you can't tell anybody. carl crawford is coming the the red sox. >> you're telling everyone that. >> you can't tell anybody until 10:00. you know what he did? >> he picked up the phone and called everybody. he ran out of people to call. he started opening up the phone book calling people indiscriminately. that is big news, though, for our red sox, isn't it, mike? >> joe, in addition to calling
everybody, it's huge news. i went to columbus circle and held up a sign for the people on traffic and buses nor all the yankee fans. >> classy move. you know the yankees, now i hear they're trying to buy the championship again for another year. that makes me really sad because they're throwing money around to everybody. >> good luck to them. >> going to nursing homes, giving people like 5-year, $250 million contracts. >> nursing home, that's the bullpen. >> their shortstop, too. go ahead. joining the table, writer for "new york magazine" john heilemann. >> affectionately known as the mayor of nothing according to willie geist. >> and adrian fenty coming up and harold ford junior still with us. you got the e-mail from the white house to clarify the headline that you were beating like a drum in the first hour, right? >> we actually read it one time. so if that's your definition of beating the headline like a
drum. >> you were so excited. see how bad this is for the white house. >> this is what cbs news. thank you forgiving us a perfect segue. the cbs news headline, "obama tax cut plan would increase taxes for the poor." we have a full screen. you don't even have to flack for them this morning. >> i don't have to get my talking points out? >> right. >> we'll get to the news. anyhow, you needed to clarify that. you were having too much fun. >> why do you hate cbs news? we grew up with cbs news. >> i have very many multiple dimension feelings about cbs news. i wouldn't put hatred in there. senate democrats are moving closer to a vote on obama's tax
deal with republicans. harry reid says he hopes to bring the measure to the floor today or tomorrow, a sign he thinks he's close to having the 60 votes needed to pass it. despite that democrats in both chambers are accusing the nation of giving the nation's highest earners a break on income an estate taxes. as a result the white house has lunched a pr push listing some of the plan's key supporters, although many are mayors and governors who don't have a vote. yesterday president obama predicted more democrats would join the backers. >> it's inaccurate to characterize democrats at large as feeling quote, unquote, betrayal. i think democrats are looking at this bill and you've already had a whole bunch of them who have said this makes sense. i think the more they look at it, the more of them are going to say this makes sense. >> harold ford, at the end of the day, does this bill pass? >> it does. it passes because the president is behind it. there are enough democrats in
the house including blue dogs and moderates. there's some angst on the part of blue dogs and moderates wondering why this wasn't done earlier, thinking it might have benefited them in november. you've got to put that aside and do what's right for the country. as barnicle and i said earlier, if you begin to see a decrease of a tenth of a point each month in unemployment numbers, the president will be praised and the president will be strengthened including the democratic party as a whole. >> john heilemann, these benefits that are going to the unemployed, the labor department just finished a report that was commissioned by george w. bush who said for every dollar you give to the unemployed in benefits, that creates $2.00 in the economy. plus all these tax cuts for the middle class, especially -- if the unemployment rate comes down one, two, three points, suddenly it's morning in america in 2012 and the president doesn't really need the extremes on the far left to win, does he?
>> that's correct. look, for the last two years a lot of people complained about how the white house was focused on big grand structural changes to the economy and not focused enough on the short-term, on the fragile recovery and on jobs. the stimmive parts of this package are by the reckoning of almost every economist i've read over the last couple days very, very strong. mark zandi, probably the most influential economist on this subject said yesterday he thought it would add a four percentage point to gdp growth and has now said he thinks unemployment will be in the mid eights by the end of next year and under 8%, down to about 7.5% by the time november 2012 rolls along. that's the scenario you're laying out, joe. from the president's perspective that is a great scenario politically, morning in america scenario, steady decline in unemployment and steady increase in gdp growth over the next two years. >> that's the greatest thing for the president economically which will be great for him
politically. >> also good for the country i might add. >> i was going to say, also, if you look -- which is why it will be good for him politically. you know what? doing the right things actually helps you. it's why i've always gone back to not understanding when rush limbaugh is saying you wanted the president to fail. i could never figure out how you could want the president to fail without wanting america to fail. you look at all these things that he has in there, the tax cuts for the middle class, unemployment benefit extensions which, again, it raises the deficit just like the tax cuts, but it stimulates the economy. and then the payroll tax cuts, it's like taking somebody who is out and just jabbing them with a shot of adrenaline. if this doesn't jolt our economy forward and get people back to work, i think it's safe to say nothing will. as far as short-term stimulus goes, mika, this is about as much of a jolt directly into the lifeblood of the economy as you can get. >> all right. i have a question for you about
that in terms of then maybe it was politically astute what he was doing. but first, the president said this is all -- >> are you going to ask me the question? >> i will have we heard from the president. here is the president about republicans. >> republicans will have to explain to the american people over the next two years how making those tax cuts for the high end permanent squares with their stated desire to start reducing deficits and debt. i don't think that formula works. but they'll have the opportunity to make the case. >> okay. i know that you thought maybe he should say that before, like, hey, pay for it. but he's saying it and calling them out. you just talked about the long-term effect this might have being potentially politically beneficial for him in 2012. so what's wrong with it? >> i have always said and you've heard me say it for several years, do not raise taxes on
people making $250,000. do not call that rich in this environment when that includes a lot of small businesses, a lot of people that file as corporations maybe. but in this case, my argument over this past week has been the president should have drawn the line at a million dollars. >> i agree with that. >> all these things economists say stimulate the economy, tax cuts for middle class, tax cuts for the wealthier americans, once you get up to a million dollars, plus, the law of diminishing returns kicks in. it costs $300 billion to give a couple hundred thousand millionaires a continuation of these tax cuts, and i don't think you get as direct of a jolt from that. i would rather -- and harold i think you would agree with me -- instead of giving -- to prove this isn't class warfare. instead of giving millionaires and billionaires an extension of the bush tax cuts, take that
$300 billion and move it straight over to capital gains and eliminate capital gains taxes for a couple years. you make a smart investment, you make money, you're creating jobs, you keep the money and then reinvest it in new businesses. >> incentivize, we should raise this to a million dollars, the threshold about what is considered wealthy in the country. i couldn't agree with you more. remember, also, as we talk about this, we need to continue to talk about growth, growth, job growth and business growth in this country will produce faster and bigger returns for the country and alleviate some of the pressure to raise taxes on anyone. if you're going to raise taxes in two years, you ought to raise the threshold to a million dollars. if they fought harder this time, they probably could have won that concession even in this conversation. >> john heilemann, you look skeptical. >> i was going to say, the $300 billion number, i believe if you
extended the tax cuts permanently and not over the course of the next two years. the price is a lot lower. joe, the broader point that's correct and mika was alluding to earlier, what the president now needs to do, economically speaking we don't have a short-term deficit problem in the country. going for short-term stimulus is the right thing to do for the economy. but we have a medium-term and much bigger term deficit problem. the onus will be on the president. he set himself up in a really good way having taken this action in the short term. he now needs to go to the country in the course of the state of the union and address the long term, immediate term deficit of the country. for the president to make this compromise and then challenge republicans on the deficit, say, okay, guys, now we have to get serious about the long-term deficit. that's going to involve both painful choices on spending, but also new revenue sources going forward over the long term ten year, 20-year, 30-year horizon. >> i agree.
>> hasn't he positioned himself perfectly, though, to do that? >> we've added a trillion dollars to the national debt. >> well, thank you for the republicans for advocating that and making sure -- >> mika, come on now? >> do you think they have no responsibility? >> he's the president of the united states. if the president of the united states had said on friday of last week, you know what, here is what we're going to do. we're going to extend unemployment benefits and we're going to pay for them. i'll figure out a way to pay for those. you want to extend bush's tax cuts, fine, show us how to do it and we'll pay for it. >> what else would have fallen by the wayside if they sometime manied themselves in this argument up until the very end? >> you would have put the republicans in the position of fighting each other. right now you've got democrats fighting each other. if barack obama said we'll give you the tax cuts, pay for it, you'd have jim demint, who said he'll vote against this bill because it raidses the deficits
frngs you'd have deficit hawks fighting supply sides in the republican party and watch them fight it out instead of watching your own party come apart at the scenes. that's politically the smart move. i've got to say, though, economically, this will stimulate the economy in the short term. but when we're $14 trillion in debt, you better choose your billions of dollars of deficit spending very wisely. >> joe, in fairness to obama and the republicans and democrats, remember this two-year extension is not adding a trillion, it will add about a quarter of a trillion. between 250 and 300. >> the overall package is $900 billion. we find that gets rounded up. if you look at the unemployment benefits, the tax cuts, the payroll tax cuts, everything, the overall price is $900 billion. again, i'm not a flat earther. i'm not herbert hoover saying
we've got to balance the budget this year. i understand that. but we need to have this conversation right now that the $ 900 billion is coming from china. it's digging our children and future generations deeper into a hole. we just need to understand that today as we debate this bill. >> fair enough which makes heilemann's point even more poignant, that we've got to now embrace some kind of big term, long term deficit reduction plan. he has a template, the president does, to do it. i think you're right. you challenge republicans, the tea party will have to make a decision about whether they want to reduce the debt going forward and they have that choice. remember, even if you took out the high-end earners and the estate tax stuff, you still would run into debt with the middle class tax cuts and unemployment benefits. either way you'd create more debt. >> at the end of the day, all the rhetoric and all the mechanics of this bill as proposed now are meaningless
unless it does one thing and enhances the most important word in the english language, j-o-b-s. that's what this is all about, get people back to work. >> we get a new bumper sticker, remember bobs for jobs, i think you can actually say now barracks for jobs. it took about 20 months to get there after bob mcdonnell. there is the urgency. this is the fierce urgency of now that mike barnicle was talking about in march of 2009 that we on "morning joe" were talking nabt march of 2009 where the white house was going, what, what? we're doing these things that might -- we can do two things at once. no. the white house is focused right now finally on doing the one thing. mike speltd it out, j-o-b-s. >> interesting arc.
up next, d.c. mayor adrian fenty will join the conversation. up next, this morning's headlines with nbc savannah guthrie, but first bill karins with a check ton forecast. u thr>> selma alabama yeste it snowed. snowed in charleston and macon, georgia. everywhere it feels like winter. the windchills this morning, very, very cold. the lowest windchills so far. 7 in art ford. at least it will be sunny for the most part. temperatures only in the low 30s. it will be windy all day long. a little break in areas like d.c. on saturday. the rain will move in on sunday. the rest of the country, the same thing goes for you, very cold today. as we go through out the week, it will slowly warm up. bundle up just like yesterday. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
barbara walters brought oprah to tears. >> shoot. i wasn't going to cry here. >> now we collected those tears and are making them available to you. oprah tears, cures blindness, paralysis. oprah tears remove vehicle rust. oprah tears kill mosquitos fast, oprah tears give hair to the bald, oprah tears -- >> available at walgreens! >> that's pretty good. welcome back to "morning joe." joining us now from washington, mayor adrian fenty. we'll get to savannah guthrie a little later.
mayor, it was good to see you the other night. >> it was. >> and booked him at the same time. that's how i work. >> if you don't want to come on the show, stay away from mika when you're out in public settings. >> mayor, let's talk about the politics of education reform. michelle rhee did it and paid the price, you did it and paid the price. is there no upside in fighting the entrenched interests that are keeping our kids in failing schools. >> i think the fact that people are willing to take on the fight is evidence that we're making ground. the hope is that michelle rhee, myself, we took some hits. but there was enough progress in d.c. from increased test scores to better collective bargaining agreements that people will say, okay, it's worth the fight. and then the next round of mayors and chancellors who do it, they'll not only be successful in turning the schools around like we were, but be able to keep doing it for another four years. >> mr. mayor, this is mike
barnicle in new york. what, if any, mistakes that you and ms. rhee made in addressing the education clil let me dilem? would you like to have anything back that you did? >> certainly our mistakes weren't in the running of the school. they have to be taken over by a mayor or governor. you can't have the boards who point their fingers without accountability. certainly have to close the schools, you've got to extend the school day. that involves going into the collective bargaining agreement. you have to be able to fire teachers who aren't performing and pay teachers more who are doing well. is there a way to do it a little more collaboratively? probably. as michelle rhee wrote in "newsweek" this week, it's not something that will be done without confrontation. those looking the fix schools and keep everybody happy are just fooling themselves. that's what we've been doing for a decade. we can obviously work better,
everybody can communicate better. but let's understand that there are certain groups who are wedded to the schools performing a certain way. and we've got to shake the school system loose from those groups. >> mr. mayor, it's john heilemann in new york. i have a similar, related kind of question. everything you just said is obviously true. what's also true is that it's not good for education reform or education to have quick turnover in terms of the leadership, whether it's the mayor or the chancellor. so there's got to be a way for mayors and chancellors who want to reform education, who recognize that there's some degree of confrontation that's going to be necessary, but for them to be able to do it in a way that allows them to survive and not get thrown out of office every two to three to four years. if you had a new mayor coming in into a city and wanted to try to accomplish the things you accomplished, but also hold on to his job, what would your advice to that new mayor be? what would you say -- this is
what you need to do? this is the balance you need to strike in order to hold on to your job and get this reform done? >> here is a great quote, again out of the "newsweek" article this week. it says that people really supported our education reform efforts, but they thought we could do it without firing teachers or closing some of the schools. they like the fact that test scores went up, graduation rates went up, et cetera. we probably have to do a better job educating people that if you want real reform, if you want it to be fixed in our lifetime, then we have to do these controversial things. we didn't educate people enough on the front end. we didn't connect the dots between the accountability measures we were putting in place and the increased result that is were coming from them. a new mayor should and will do a better job at that. look at joel klein's article in "the new york times" this week, he left the new york system. he said everybody knows what needs to be done. we just have to have the political courage to do it. joel klein said if he had a
chance to do it all again, he'd actually go even faster. >> mayor, harold ford. good morning, in new york as well. as you move from this point to next, how do you stay involved? how do you help the next chancellor. i agree with you and applaud what you and michelle rhee have done. you talked about collaboration. how will you urge mayor gray and his team and even those in the school system -- and i understand d.c. elected a new union president who may be less friendly to some of the reforms that you and chancellor rhee pushed for. how do you plan to stay more involved or stay involved and influence or push forward what you and chancellor rhee advocated and urged and accomplished in your four years? >> the great thing about the new mayor -- richelle rhee is gone but appointed her deputy. the new chancellor henderson is going to continue the same types of things. they've proposed closing three more schools which were underenrolled. that's what you've got to do.
you've got to right-size the system. there probably will be more teacher lay-offs proposed. if those teachers don't show the type of performance needed, the politicians have to support tough decisions like that. >> all right. mayor fenty, thank you very much. it was great to see you the other night. great to have you on the show this morning. >> thank you for your service. thank you for your courage, thank you for going against the status quo. you know what? the kids of washington, d.c. are a lot better off now than they were when you began this battle. i've always been shocked, mayor fenty, when i served in washington, i was shocked by the people that stood in the way of reform in that city. it was the very people you would expect to be fighting for those kids in anacostia and other areas. they just didn't do it. thank you so much for doing it.
>> it was my honor, joe. >> by the way, thanks, mayor -- >> you bump into him at the kennedy center. he comes on the show. michelle rhee -- you must have bumped into michelle rhee at a bowling ali or something because she's coming on tomorrow. >> no. she's booked through our booking department, our fabulous booking department. >> savannah guthrie, are we going to her now or after the break? >> let's go to break. savannah guthrie live at the white house when we come back.
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the deal that was brokered by the president through the united states, my grievance with him is he did not fight a rigorous enough battle for this, not just in the last week, not just in the last month, in the entire last year. that's one of the reasons we're having the failure. the president i'm self likened this to the fight over the public option. i agree with him. if he would have made a tougher fight in that, we would have had that in today's law. >> all right. anthony weiner. that was pretty heated exchange he had on fox. that wasn't all of that. what do you think of that. >> i think, of course -- this wouldn't surprise anthony or anybody out there. ideologically i disagree with him because they were talking
about the inheritance tax. i think politically he's exactly right there. the president did not fight the fight that he should have fought on tax cuts for people making a million plus even if he moved that money to reducing capital gains, more into payroll tackles. that being said, i guess a big question is do the democrats go ahead and vote for it anyway? i think they will. joining us now to talk about this and much more going on at the white house, white house correspondent and co-host of "the daily rundown," savannah guthrie. savannah, good morning. >> good morning. >> okay. do you want me to read this white house blog on the tax deal? >> let's first start by asking savannah, do you think, is the white house feeling pretty good that they're going to get the votes they need to pass this tax cut plan? >> i think so. just talking to a senior aid aide this morning, they feel good about it. they already picked up more democratic support in the senate. so things look more solid there. on the house side, i think
there's an acknowledgment there that it's probably going to be more lopsided, more republicans voting for it or the republicans being the majority of the yes votes verse it is democrats. that's just the way it is. some of us have looked at this. it's kind of like the stages of grief and moving past the anger, the sadness, the bargaining. some democrats are starting the accept that this is the deal. they may not like it. the president has said there's parts that he doesn't like. they're putting it on the line. we had larry summers, one of the chief economic advisors yesterday speaking practically apocalypt apocalyptically, if this doesn't pat it increases the risk of a double-dip recession if this doesn't get passed. so the white house feels like they're on a better path here. this could get debated in the senate as soon as today. >> do you think the republicans when they debate it will express to deep concern that they expressed during stimulus and so
many other of obama's policy that is they were so critical of, the concern they feel about the deficit, the debt and the amount that this is going to cost and how it's not being paid for? >> i think there actually will be some that do that. i think there will be some. i think you're going to see obviously jim demint already expressing that concern. and if you had all the tea party members that will be elected in january, i guarantee you a lot of them would be raising these concerns. we had these battles in '95. >> but not concerned enough to vote it down. >> i was going to say, i think it's interesting, as we well know, the deficit issue is a major republican talking point and concern. however, when you ask republicans about this particular deal, this goes to a philosophy issue. they don't think tax cuts are the same as deficit spending. in fact, we had senator cornyn on our show a couple days ago and i asked him, would you acknowledge that tax cuts exacerbate the deficit. and their view is, look, we
don't think it's a deficit problem when you're just handing back money that belongs to the american people. so i don't know that this will be the instance where you hear republicans coming out and saying, oh, this deficit spending is terrible. this is predominantly tack cuts. >> republicans believe, conservatives believe, a lot do, when you cut tax pgs it stimulates the economy and the economy grows and more revenue comes in. but i don't think anybody believes after eight years of rag anomics which i supported that you can cut taxes and magically expect a budget to balance itself. that doesn't happen because less revenue is coming in. that being said, john heilemann, i think republicans are willing to allow the deficit to go up if that means less taxes going to the federal government. >> yes. and they maintain that their position of what they think is intellectually consistent is the
notion that somehow, where the cuts need to happen are on the spending side and taxes should be as low as possible at all times and we can somehow reduce the whole deficit by just dealing with the spending side which is just fiction. the truth is that you there's a lot of important things you can do on the spending side. but the big ones, the one that is really matter will be very painful, will have to do with things like medicare medicaid and social security. and the defense, which is what the bulk of the government spends money on. even if you do all that, you need to raise more revenue. no matter how long term, no matter how draconian you are on the spending side, you have to deal with the revenue side as well. that's a reality the republicans will have to reckon with and the president has to educate the country on over the next two years of his first term. >> there's no doubt there's a philosophical difference in the minds of republicans as savannah said. that point is sub orlando nant. the president is leading here. remember, as you said on this show, you and mike both, joe,
and mika as well, business leads and sustains a recovery. you have to empower and enable them not only plan over the next five to ten months, but the next five to ten years. this bill is an important step in that direction. two, we can't emphasize enough presidential leadership around the issue of this debt commission or this deficit reduction plan. if he does that and holds the tea party, holds jim demint and others to their word that they want to reduce it long-term, i think we'll nod only see this unemployment numbers come down, but the government's balance sheet emerge stronger and better, more vibrant going forward. >> no doubt about it. we've got to go. savannah guthrie, one other really quick side note here, harold and i have been saying for some time that the president's biggest problem is not reconnecting with the left but reconnecting with independents and the business community. if i were to have given the white house any advice last week on one thing they could do to send a positive signal to the business community, it would be to bring in jamie diamond, the
man most respected in wall street and financial circles, regardless of what they say about him on the "huffinigton post," barack obama aligning himself with jamie diamond in any way sends a great signal to the business community and they, guess, had a secret meeting yesterday, right? >> well, you know what, joe? i don't know about that. i don't know what to say. you're breaking news with me. i hadn't read that. >> you know why you don't know that? it's secret. >> exactly. >> and secrets are supposed to be kept secret. >> that one slipped past me. i'll find out for you. >> find out. i could have gotten it wrong. but reading through the clips this morning an unidentified source there who spoke on the conditions of anonymity because it was a secret meeting said that they met and they talked. >> harold, you agree, right? jamie diamond. >> i would put brian moynihan in that also. jam my diamond -- i saw the same report, was in the white house,
had a conversation, mending whatever differences might have been there. he's a good one to talk to and certainly one that can give the president a strong pitch about jobs, not just wall street, but main street business as well. >> jamie diamond is not -- >> by the way, moynihan signs harold's check. >> of course. >> you know who i think they should have in there, jeff 'em elt and steve burke. >> savannah guthrie and steve burke. >> and phil griffith. >> of course phil griffith. how could k you not have him in the white house if you want to turn this economy around. stop that. >> it's just so -- >> they're just such great men and they're good looking, too. i don't know how men can preserve themselves the way that emelt and phil griffith and burke do. talking about fabio? it's like harl quinn romance
guys. >> coming up next, the first look at the cover of "time" magazine. also, don't forget to tune in tomorrow. >> i'm so excited. >> mika's great friend governor ed rendell is going to be here, as well as my friend and a guy excited to be winning, pat toomey. we'll be right back. keep it right here on "morning joe." $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
here with us, deputy managing editor of "time," michael elliot here to reveal the latest cover of "time" magazine. how are you. >> good, willie. how are you. >> let's not waste anymore time. unveil, please. >> you feel like you're wasting a lot of time. >> palin in progress. a terrific cover story by jane newton smal. a nice pun i hope you see in the morning, a paint-by-numbers cover. a fabulous story in which she asks is sarah palin happy with
being a rich celebrity, or is she getting ready to run for president? something -- >> john heilemann had a cover saying "palin 2012." where are we? >> i continue to be a simple man. if you took -- if i gave you sarah palin's schedule over the last year, talked about the money she's raised, the travel she's done, endorsements, everything she's done. you don't know who this person is, take her name off of it. if you looked at that, you would say that person is running for president. there's no question that she's setting herself up to be in a position to run for president. whether she duds or not, who knows? that requires a lot of claire voiians. where does jay come down on the subject oovps. >> the end of this article goes like this, jay was talking to sarah palin and she says, what does palin make of the obama presidency so far? palin quips with two words,
jimmy carter. asked who can beat him, she needs someone who can draw a sharp contrast. that seems to me leaning pretty far forward. >> whaut does she think, jail, as she looks to the rest of the field? is that encouraging or discharging to her? >> i think all the people not running for president, have not announced they're running on the republican side, they look at the field and i think what they see is what most republican professionals see which is the weakest field that anybody has seen in many, many years. i think for each of the individuals who is thinking about running, the weakness of the field is encouraging to all of them. it's a funny thing. usually people are racing to get into the race as early as possible. all these people are -- it's like a reverse game of chicken. no one wants to get in earlier than they have to. right now what seems to be the consensus among all these folks is they don't have to get in until late spring or early summer. we may not see this field solidify for quite some time. >> i want to know what her rising level of affluence,
family's rising level of affluence has done to her or for her? >> one of the things it's enabled her to do is spend time put together a staff. she's been able to spend time finding iner circles, outer circles who can help her. she's been spending time working on issues. she's putting together something that looks like a team. it's an odd team. not the sort of team we're used to in terms of the network of political consults, the network of field offices that people typically as sechlable at some point. this is very different. i think one of the interesting things about sarah palin is how quick she has been to social media. twitter has been a huge thing for her, sfas book has been a huge thing for her. just as obama two years ago used the internet in extraordinary way to raise money, now it seems the next generation of using new media and who new, it's palin
who is doing it. >> the conventional wisdom is she could win a primary but then would get slaughtered in the general election. is there any reason to believe she can sway independents her way? >> she plainly believes that obama is vulnerable. she plainly believes that obama is vulnerable. i know that's the conventional wisdom, she win it is primary, gets the emotion, gets the committed kind of red meat republican vote and then she kind of gets smashed in a general election. she plainly does not believe that that's a necessary scenario. >> we've been talking all morning about the short-term economic picture for obama. if it's true that what they're putting together now in terms of an economic plan, if it brings down unemployment appreciably over the course of the next two years, barack obama is probably going to be re-elected. if we look up 18 months from now and unemployment is above 8.5% or 9%, i think sarah palin could beat barack obama. i think almost any republican
could beat barack obama if that's the case, an unemployment rate over 9% for the entire four years of an administration, you can't win in those circumstances. >> all bets are off. quickly, joe klein reporting from afghanistan as well. >> joe, if you remember earlier in the year, joe went to afghanistan and went to see a school in a particular village. the soldiers were trying to work with locals to reopen. he went back a couple weeks ago, did an absolutely fantastic story on what's happened in the last six months. a moderately hopeful story. >> as good as we can expect. >> a moderately hopeful story on what can be achieved in afghanistan if you get locals and u.s. forces working together. >> can't wait to dig into the new issue of "time." the cover again, "palin in progress." coming up house majority senate leader steny hoyer. wow ear watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
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broke. >> that can't be the whole story. everyone knows swedish condoms are notoriously difficult to use. let alone assemble. oops, i don't think that's where the allen wench goes. >> how about a little ikea humor for you there. good stuff. let's talk about what's really on everyone's mind, especially around this table, the signing by the boston red sox of carl crawford. a talented young outfielder in the major leagues. he's getting $142 million. an outrageous price tag for a team that's in the business of buying championships. your thoughts. >> hold on. i'm canceling some things i had planned for october. some events i was supposed to be at because i'm going to be busy in october. don't you think it's fair to say people don't really know him that well because he's with the
tampa bay rays. he is the closest thing to a roberto clemente figure. he's a five-tool player. he does it all. >> literally a game-changer. >> and mike barnicle last year we suffered wondering where the hits would come in the lineup. listen with this lineup. let's just project this. batting second, dustin, batting third, crawford. batting fourth, gonzalez. batting fifth, youkilis. batting sixth, ortiz. and you know what? if the blister doesn't keep him out for six months, those are six tough batters to get through. >> the defensive lineup they put on the field with crawford and ellsbury and a potential gold glove at third base, kevin
youkilis, and gonzalez, a gold glover at first base, pedroia at second. i'm feeling pretty good about things. >> the best thing about all this is we will be in the playoffs and we'll probably win another world series, our third this decade and it's getting kind of boring by now, but we do it with a moral superiority because unlike the new york incomes, ya don't have to buy championships. >> we're all about home grown talent in beantown. >> if you look at the yankees infield at any given moment, everybody player will be in the hall of fame. coming up next, steny hoyer and our man dylan ratigan waking up early for us. ring ring ring ring
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it's inaccurate to characterize democrats at large as feeling betrayal. i think democrats are looking at this bill and you have already had a whole bunch of them who have said this makes sense and i think the more they look at it, the more of them are going to say this makes sense. >> all right. a live look at times square in new york city. welcome back to "morning joe." we're live in houston this morning and back in new york we've got willie geist and mike barnicle and john heilemann. and from capitol hill, house
majority leader and democratic representative from maryland, congressman steny hoyer. and also back in new york, we've got the host of the dylan ratigan show, dylan ratigan. oh, this should be good. >> no doubt about it. there are a lot of questions out there this morning about whether the democrats are going to be able to pass this or not. let's -- >> let's ask steny hoyer. >> let's go straight to steny hoyer, the majority leader of the u.s. house of representatives. always great talking to you. >> good to be with you. >> do you think you will be able to get enough votes to pass the president's tax plan? >> joe, the first thing we have to find out is what the senate can pass. we obviously have passed a bill which i think reflected what the democrats believed was appropriate and that is a cut in middle income tax rates and make sure they don't go up in january. i think the overwhelming majority of the american public supported that policy, including republicans, 52% in a cbs news poll shows that they supported
that policy. however, obviously the republicans would not vote for anything unless upper income taxes were frozen, and the estate tax was changed so that we're confronted with what the senate is going to do. we'll see pretty soon hopefully what the senate is going to do, and i think the objective that the president has tried to reach is the objective that we need to reach, and that is on the one hand we need to grow the economy. obviously, we need to address the deficit in the longer term, but as ben bernanke said if we don't address growing the economy in the short term, we're not going to be able to achieve the second objective of bringing the deficit down. >> steny, a lot of reports that house democrats especially are very angry with the white house, that joe biden received a chilly reception on capitol hill. what are you doing to try to keep your caucus together? >> actually, i wouldn't characterize the reception that vice president biden got as chilly. i would characterize it as the
expression of very substantial disagreement with the provisions regarding the high income taxes and to the estate tax, which i think most democrats don't believe will have any positive effect on growing the economy but will simply make the deficit worse. i happen to agree with that proposition. i think that's accurate. i don't think it's going to have a real effect on the economy, but it's clear that the republicans have determined unless the wealthiest in america get benefits, then they won't vote for unemployment insurance, they won't vote for a cut in taxes in the 2% in the working mens' wages on fic a, so the president saw himself into a position where if we were going to get anything done, we could get it through the house, but if they were going to get anything through the senate, this he had to make an accommodation. we'll see what happens in the senate, whether that's modified, and then we'll see what we do in the house but it's clear, joe,
we need to help grow the economy. >> yeah. i'm sorry, we have a delay here. the question is why not fight the fight and tell republicans, say we will give you tax cuts even for people making 250 to $1 million but we will not give millionaire tax breaks. you look at a cbs poll that's out, 65% of americans oppose giving tax cuts to people over $250,000. you push that up to a $1 million -- >> i just made that point. >> you can win that battle. the question is why didn't the president fight that fight and say we're not giving millionaires cuts and we're not going to let you keep unemployment benefits away from families at christmas. >> i think all of us in the house would have been more pleased if we'd had a more vigorous express of that to the american public. we're where the american people are and as i said, joe, 52% of
the republicans polled agree with us in that cbs news poll. so, yes, i'm disappointed we didn't make a more vigorous fight. i'm frankly disappointed that when they took the vote last saturday, that we didn't have a full-fledged filibuster so the american people would have had the opportunity to see in the senate we're in a majority, 53 in both instances agreed with the population you just set forward. 53 senators said 250 and under. 53 senators said $1 million and under should be the cap. unfortunately, in the senate a majority doesn't rule. the minority rules -- >> i understand. we understand the math of that. we just don't understand -- i personally don't understand why the republicans aren't being called out on their own words and their own concerns about spending and honestly we have a lot of ceos, joe, obviously on our show and people who are very, very rich. every single one we've asked are you glad you got to keep your tax cut? haven't heard one say, yeah, i really am.
i mean, i'm sorry, it's disgusting. >> they're right. >> i think these people -- yeah, they are right. >> that's, of course, what the house did, you understand. we passed through the house what i think reflected the majority view in this country, and that is 250 and under, you get a tax cut. but if you're over that, that's not going to spur the economy and very frankly you're going to be able to put food on your table. we've got two major problems. creating jobs and in the long term bringing deficits down. this doesn't help doing that latter one. >> okay. and in terms of creating jobs at least, let's go to dylan ratigan now. overall in terms of the plan that we're looking at, that they're potentially going to get through here, will it have a positive effect on the economy? are we looking at better days ahead? >> no. not that i honestly have the answer to that question, but if you look at the body of research in terms of the incremental change in job creation through the estimates of anybody who
looks at this, through the banking community, through the analyst community, it's very limited. you talk about those ceos, mika, you know, you get the tax cut, it's a little extra money to invest in china. remember, we have a situation where you've got trading practices that are sucking money t of our country that's costing us jobs. we are blowing money out of this country on energy. we have a health care system that costs 19% of our gdp, which compares to a country like germany at 12%, and instead of actually addressing an exquisitely expensive health system or foreign oil imports in the middle east that fund people that want to kill us, we borrow money from our children to give tax cuts and other forms of economic stimulation that really help take money further out of the country. the good news is with the tax cut money for the rich, like i said, they have a few extra dollars to invest in china. >> can i say that i agree with everything that was just said. i think the tax cuts for the wealthiest americans make no
economic sense. they don't accomplish the objective of trying to help with the deficit in the long term, and they're simply the position the republican party has taken in both the house and the senate that in order for them to take any action to either grow the economy or to give middle income working people an assurance that their tacks aren't going to go up, that we had to make some sort of deal. that's what the president was confronted with. we'll see whether the house or senate go along with that. >> mike barnicle, do you have a question for steny hoyer? >> i do, congressman. we understand as you just explained that you don't know what's going to come out of the senate on the way to the house, but within your caucus right now, what is the biggest hurdle for those who are opposed to this proposal? >> well, i think the estate tax i think is perceived to be the most egregious. we're talking about 32,000 additional people. we passed a bill over a year ago which adopted what was in place in 2009, the $3.5 million per
spouse exemption. that was $7 million, and a 45% rate. that was in place. we thought that that was -- some people thought that was too high at that point in time, but it was a reasonable compromise. now we have substantially increased that from 7 million to 10 million, 39,000 families going to be affected by that, but it's going to cost billions of dollars to do that and make the deficit worse and we'll have no, none, positive effect on the economy. we think that is not a good action to take, and i think that's the item. i also think the upper income tax freeze doesn't make sense either from the house's perspective. however, i think the most ag ag jus response or the most vigorous response has been to the estate tax deal. >> congressman hoyer, the democrats in congress were in a position of great power and
leverage three or four months ago, in september, october, before the midterm elections when people knew the republicans were going to gain a lot of seats and maybe control the house. you guys could have done whatever you wanted in terms of the bush tax cuts and yet you chose not to, which seems to me at least to undercut some of the outrage on the part of some members of your caucus that the president has made this deal. how many people in your caucus were adamant about let's take this on back in september and october when they had a chance, and to what extent do you think that that kind of robs you of some of the righteous out rage that people now feel? >> i don't accept your premise and i don't think the facts support your premise. when you say we could have done anything we wanted to. obviously, the house of representatives has about 400-plus bills that it has passed in the house of representatives given the rules, very frankly, you can operate as we expect in a democracy with a majority vote. we have some 400-plus bills pending in the united states senate, including the estate tax
at $3.5 million exemption for each individual, and that is still pending over a year in the united states senate. why? because the united states senate cannot pass things with simply a majority vote. so when you say we had the overwhelming power to do that, it is clear over the last two years that the filibuster has precluded making policy in the united states senate except after capitulation with the republican minority that said they wouldn't do things unless they were accommodated. the estate tax and the high income freeze on taxes is evidence of that in the present context. we're still where we were essentially and we're still having the same problem with the minority ruling in the united states senate. >> congressman, it's willie geist here. we have heard even just this morning members of your own caucus there in the house express their great disappointment with president
obama for what they say is a caving in to republicans on this issue. he obviously takes exception with that. do you share their frustration? are you disappointed in the president for agreeing to this deal? >> i think we're all frustrated that we could not adopt policies that are consistent with what the overwhelming majority of americans believe is good, sound policy. >> should the president have made this deal then? >> i think the president should have made a fight that would have made it clearer to the american public the distinctions between those of us who wanted to adopt policies that would grow jobs and give middle income working americans relief without holding hostage the wealthiest in our country. do i think the president could have done that perhaps more vigorously? the answer is yes. does my caucus think that's the case? yes. but in the final analysis, the president was confronted with a reality, as we all are, of a sufficient number of republicans h indeed all of the republicans in the united states senate, who
said unless the wealthiest are given a break, then we're not going to give a break to those who are unemployed or those working americans who are struggling and we don't want to increase their taxes. >> help me out here though, steny, because this is the one thing i haven't been able to understand, and i thought just politically the president should have fought harder for tax cuts for people making $1 million-plus. as you know, i love tax cuts. i'm talking about how do you get working class americans back to work? and move that to capital gains cuts, anything but that, but here is my question though. you guys are still in charge. you still have a 70-plus vote majority in the house. you still have a 17, 18 vote majority in the senate. why can't you guys convince enough democrats to stay with us in the house? >> in the house? well, joe, we have passed things in the house. we have enough democrats in the house, and we passed the
policies. we passed a tax bill which did exactly what you just said. said working people ought to not have their taxes increased but those of us who are doing much better ought to help participate in what the american public also said was a problem, and that is -- >> so if that's the case, steny, you guys could pass it again and you could pass something that excludes millionaires and you could stare down the senate and say we're not going along -- as you know, we did that a few times back in the '90s and it brought bill clinton to the table. >> joe, if you were in the senate, you perhaps could help us, but, you know, you have had 41 senators in lock step on this, republican senators who have said they won't do anything unless their tax policies are passed which deal with the estate tax. kyl has made that very clear. he's the second ranking leaders in the senate on the republican side. so, yes, we could do that again,
we have the votes to do that again, but the issue is whether or not that would have any effect in the united states senate. there's no indication that any republican senator is prepared to make that compromise and given the rules of the senate -- >> but the bill does not become law unless the house of representatives says it becomes the law. >> joe, here is what is of great concern to the president and others. yes, it doesn't. so what happens on january 1st? let's say we take our position, they take their position. i hope to see some changes in the bill when it comes to the senate. perhaps we'll affect some changes in the house when it does, but what happens on january 1st? on january 1st we've already had unemployment insurance lapse, which means 2 million people don't have any resources to put food on their tables. secondly, we're going to have an increase in the taxes on working americans. that resulted, as you know, from the policies put in place under the republicans when they were in charge in 2001.
they did it for budget purposes. they didn't want to show the real cost of their tax cuts to the economy and to the treasury. they did not cut spending. in fact, they increased spending during that period of time. >> that's right. >> so we're confronted with huge deficits. so the president and the congress are confronted with an increase in middle income taxes if we continue to have gridlock and no extension of unemployment insurance. both of those will undermine the economy, and the president obviously made a judgment we're going to have to determine whether we're going to make a similar judgment as to whether or not putting the economy at risk and putting millions of americans at risk in their homes and their families in surviving or whether or not we're going to play a game of political chicken. unfortunately, the republicans have opinion prepare ebeen prep game in protecting the wealthiest in our country. we don't want to put the nonwealthy in our country at
such risk. we'll see what we can do. >> all right. majority leader steny hoyer, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> thanks, steny. >> thanks for your honesty. >> good luck. >> thanks very much. >> thanks a lot. >> always great talking to you, steny. >> so undermining the economy, dylan ratigan was his characterization of the way forward correct in your estimate because you're not seeing this plan as a big shot in the arm. >> this is a kick the can down the road move. anytime you borrow $1 trillion to pay off your political constituencies, you are preserving yourself but you're not solving the problem. remember, we don't have jobs because we do not have a dynamic, innovative economy that's attracting investment. so we have to ask ourself, why is that, why aren't we attracting investment? why aren't we getting invasion? you have to look around the room and say where are we spending our money? like i said with the congressman, when you have a
monopoly employer-based health care system that costs basically 20 cents out of every dollar that's spent in this economy, 19% of our gdp, it is very difficult to compete with other countries who are spending 10 or 12 cents out of every dollar on health care. it's just a huge disadvantage. the sat thing when it comes to importing energy and ultimately allowing, again, a foreign country the size of china to effectively rig themselves in a way that they can get full employment in their country, albeit at slave wages, and effectively use their currency to export that unemployment to our country. those are real issues. those are real issues that require real leadership. it's easier to give away $1 trillion to the american people than it is to deal with everything that i just put on the list. >> all right. dylan ratigan, thanks. up next, a major setback for president obama's efforts to close gitmo. that is next in the political playbook. a little later, congressman
elijah cummings joins the conversation. plus new jobless numbers just minutes away. first bill with a quick check on the forecast. >> thanks, mika. i was looking at the forecast for not just this week but next week and it looks brutally cold next week. maybe even colder than what we're dealing with right now. the only warm spots in the country is going to be like arizona and southern california. so if you really want to beat the temperatures and get warm, it's the only place you're going to head. currently the windchill very brutal. albany, 3. buffalo, 3. boston at is at 8. atlanta is at 20. we had snow yesterday in portions of alabama and georgia. we're going to see things warming up though in the days ahead. today is the coldest day we're going to see for a while up in new england. also, the midwest a little bit of a break. kansas city is warming up. denver is not too bad. phoenix looks nice. a look at your friday forecast shows some warmer temperatures heading to the east does coast. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
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a live look at the rink at rockefeller plaza. we begin with the houston chronicle. nasa takes a giant leap away from the space flight business. yesterday for the first time a private company launched its own rocket from cape canaveral, florida. this as nasa phases out its fleet of shuttles. >> "wall street journal," 26-year-old facebook ceo mark zuckerberg is among 16 billionaires joining a group pledging to give the majority of their wealth to charity. >> st. petersburg times. urban meyer is resigning saying this time it's about being a better father. he's walking away from about 20 million bucks. >> and "the new york times," an unexpected surge in the ebook business, romance novels are fastest growing segment of the market ahead of general fiction, mystery, and science fiction. one theory, it's less embarrassing to buy them online as we found out when we bought willie and joe's latest romance
novel the two of you wrote together, it was a best-seller. >> that's deeply moving. i think a lot of people are going to be changed by it. with us the chief white house correspondent for politico, mike allen. gitmo, something we haven't talked about for a while. tucked into the nearly $1 trillion spending bill that passed yesterday, a provision that prevents detainees at guantanamo bay from being transferred to the u.s. for criminal trials. what does this mean for obama's plan to try to try these guys in civilian courts? >> well, willie, it means it's caput. the white house has been trying to keep that option open. we knew khalid shaikh mohammed was unlikely to be tried in new york city, too much opposition there, but they were imagining possibly trying him some place else, pennsylvania, virginia, some place elsewhere 9/11 occurred. that cannot happen under this bill that passed yesterday through september. the funding would be -- they'd be barred from using this for any type of civilian trials.
fascinating twist on this, and it shows how con voluvoluted th are. this was a democratic bill. no republican voted for it. the white house opposes this provision that ties their hands. so it was unlikely to happen anyway, but now on paper it's not even theoretically possible. >> the case wasn't helped when the first gitmo detainee to come up to a civilian court was found guilty on only one of hundreds of charges. >> that was definitely is moment. >> that was not good for the cause. progressives grumbling about the president's move to the center on tax cuts. could we possibly see a challenge to obama from the left in the presidential race in 2012? >> this has become a little bit of an urban myth on the web and certain cable stations. ben smith and jonathan martin checked around. progressives may want someone else, but there is not someone else who is going to take on this president. howard dean is not going to do it. it's just not in the cards.
african-americans, a key part of the democratic base, don't want it, labor doesn't want it. of all the things we can worry about, think about, talk about, this is one we can take off the table, willie. >> we heard the white house was a little worried if russ feingold lost in wisconsin he was a potential challenger. are you discounting that entirely? >> yeah. they looked into that and are convinced not only is he not going to go but there would not be the machinery -- there would not be the support to make it anything more than a nuisance. it would not do the sort of damage you have written about where a president has to fight off a real challenge like jimmy carter saw. there's nothing like that, nothing to propel it. >> progressives are going to come home to obama. they're mad now but they'll be back. we'll talk to you later. coming up next, new weekly jobless numbers with erin burnett. commission-free etfs
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welcome back to "morning joe." beautiful shot of new york city. somewhere there is an international superstar that goes by the name -- >> you can see the shine coming. >> it's glowing over here. follow the glow down to the new york stock exchange. you will find erin burnett who also has a remarkable special i
think on a country that's one of the most important politically and could be economically in the come years, iran. it's falled eh called "the forbidden zone." tell me about the breaking news and then tell me more about iran, the forbidden zone. >> you are really nice to say that. jobless claims coming in, good news, better than expected. 421,000 claims. 450 as we always talk about is the demarcation line. above that, bad, below that, good. you haven't seen the unemployment rate improve. 421 is good. it's not great but it's good. i think now we need to start looking at 400 as the mantgic number. better than expected there. we saw the markets get a little bit of a pop on that. you have irving picard trying to get money back for people
swindled by bernie madoff. suing big banks for $1 billion saying they should have known what was going on. banks said give me a break, we didn't know. that fight will continue. on the executive pay front, maybe all the outrage worked, morgan stanley said they will allocate 10% to 25% depending on the unit of the company less for bonuses. this is a year we thought we were going to have a record for bonuses. all these stories sort of setting the stage, but it's interesting that maybe moral persuasion worked a little bit. i don't want to oversell it, a little bit here for executive pay. willie? >> erin, let's go back to the numbers, we have the breaking news down below you there. one week it's better than expected, the next week it's a little worse than expected. let's take a step back. what's the overall trend line? >> marginal improvement and really all i can say. you're seeing less firing, seeing people work longer hours. they're earning a little more and that's what you're seeing in the retail sales data. people are feeling better, they've paid down debt but it's a long process and we're not
going to see a marked improvement in the job situation in this country for experts say probably six months, even a year before you start to see a real improvement. very slow. >> and what's been the bottom line? we know early indications on wall street and foreign markets about this tax cut deal were good. has that continued through the week? >> yeah. look, the market was happy because they didn't expect that payroll tax cut. that was why you got a little bit of a pop here. there was some sweeteners in the deal is how i would say it. i think as long as they stick with this we're not negotiating, the deal is going ahead, wall street will be fine with it, but the reaction is done. now they're going to move on to the next thing which will be worrying about ben bernanke and interest rates or all of a sudden worrying about the deficit again because that's going up because of tax cuts. you can never please them, willie, but we will have a higher open, and -- >> they're insatiable. >> insatiable. what's up, mike? >> erin, what do you anticipate the market's reaction will be today to the fact that the red
cox signed carl crawford last night? she's assuring them of a run well into october. >> you're completely right, and i just -- i blew it. that's the reason the futures are up. >> thank you very much. >> that is clearly the reason. i just looked on the wrong line of headlines. >> mike barnicle. >> exactly. all right. and we're going to talk to an american investor who went to tehran and wants to invest there. he's going to talk all about it, and our own nbc news bureau chief, because as we told you yesterday if you saw our piece about the company transammonia doing business in iran, nbc news has a license to do business in iran. we have a bureau chief, and he went out on the streets of tehran to see whether sanctions are really working. he has a special report for us as well. >> interesting you said you saw ford, you saw everything out there. >> everything. >> despite the sanctions. >> yes. >> thanks so much. >> thanks, guys. >> we'll be watching. congressman elijah cummings next on "morning joe."
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here is the thing, the president got the very best deal that he could get. i believe that. i really do. i think in its current state it's got some issues because as you know the republicans want to give the wealthy few, and i'm talking about seriously just a few families, all these breaks and it adds mightily to the deficit, and it doesn't hold up in the light of day. and now the country is looking at this. so i'm optimistic that we can make this bill better and get it done. >> i am leaning towards, you know, what senator demint has said, he's concerned that they're bringing back, you know, the estate tax. right now the estate tax is zero and i kind of like that, but the new estate tax under this legislation will be 35%. i don't like that, and i also
don't like that we're coupling it with increases in spending. you really shouldn't cut taxes and increase spending. if you want to cut taxes you should cut spending also. so i'd be leaping against voting for it. >> do you hear that? >> well, there you go. >> welcome back to "morning joe." i said during rand paul's campaign that this is a guy that would actually talk the talk on the campaign trail and walk the walk when he gets elected. a lot of republicans talk about wanting to cut the deficits, but very few are saying what rand paul just said there, which is if you're going to cut taxes, cut spending at the same time. >> right. well -- >> that's not going to happen. >> it's not. >> i'm surprised barbara boxer is doing what a lot of democrats are doing, which is they're saying, well, you know, there's nothing we can do, we don't like giving tax cuts to millionaires but our hands are tied. no, they aren't. they're not tied. you fight for what you believe in in washington, d.c., and to
just say, well, the republicans have this position where we're going to give millionaires tax cuts so we can't do anything about it is ridiculous when they have a 19-vote majority in the senate and a 70-plus vote majority in the house. they're still in control. and they have the president. so, please, don't tell me that the democratic party can do absolutely nothing about it because that's just not the truth. >> we'll ask a democrat about this and maybe he has a different point of view. joining us from washington democratic representative from maryland, congressman elijah cummings. good morning. >> elijah it's always good to talk to you. the defeatism from the white house and from some people in the democratic party is staggering to me. you know i'm a conservative. i love tax cuts, but i'm getting tired of hearing democrats saying, oh, there's nothing we can do about it, those big, bad republicans want to cut taxes for millionaires. do you agree there's nothing you can do to stop tax cuts for millionaires? >> no, i think we have got to continue to fight.
as a matter of fact, many of my constituents, i would say 95% of all the calls that we have gotten into my office, my constituents are saying fight on. we must fight. the fact is, joe, i think that if we -- if the republicans wanted this tax cut for our wealthiest folks, they should have done what they've been doing all the time, figure out a way to pay for it. and i agree with you and some of your earlier shows where you said the president should have come in and said, look, we'll find a way to cover the unemployment benefit extension. you find a way to address these tax cuts. and basically -- >> right. >> and when we're giving these kinds of cuts to the wealthiest of the wealthy, basically what we're doing is we are opening the door for some major problems in the future because we're adding to the deficit, and let me tell you something what's
going to happen next year. the republicans are going to come back, the deficit is going to be increased, and you know what they're going to call it, the obama deficit. and do you know what that will lead to? what that will lead to is they'll put themselves in a position to say now we must cut medicare, we must cut social prag programs, we must cut social security. and so i think we're kind of setting ourselves up. i understand what the president was trying to do. he's acting with the urgency of now trying to make sure that we have some stimulation to this economy, but the question becomes at what price and what are the republicans giving up? see, that's the other question. and i think that's why people are so upset. i don't think -- >> exactly. >> nothing. >> exactly. >> nothing. >> exactly because when they do the ledgers they go the republicans are getting these tax cuts over here and i look at the tax cuts, i love that. i think what are the democrats getting?
oh, they're getting a cut in payroll taxes. really? republicans like that, too. >> oh, good. happy to help you. >> elijah brings up a good point about this potentially becoming the obama deficit. >> yeah. >> hold on. do you think a more vigorous debate would ward against that? >> yes, yes, yes. because the president has rolled over. he's given the republicans everything they want, and the republicans even now, there is a bush commission study, the labor department put it out last week, that says unemployment benefits stimulate the economy. the republicans know that as well. but the president didn't fight and for the life of me i cannot figure out why politically, elijah, barack obama couldn't say, okay, republicans, you're going to end unemployment benefits for families at christmastime because you want to give tax cuts to millionaires? go ahead, make my day. he would win that debate every
day. every day. but he didn't take it. >> i agree with you. i would have said, please, if you want to show how much you care about our constituents that are down and out, that are having difficult times, yeah, the deprive them of unemployment and benefits. and i was listening yesterday and i almost vomited when de menthe ta-- demint when he saide was against this package because we don't way for the unemployment benefits. he doesn't talk about all the money we're losing with regard to the wealthy tax cuts. very interesting. i was hoping the president would be a little stronger on this, and the other thing that i would say, and we met with biden yesterday, vice president biden, he did a great job. i think we were all pretty impressed with him, but one of the things that messages went out to our president and that is
that, you know, we're the ones who have supported the president, and we've been very strong for him. and when he begins to talk about us as being purists when we're talking about principal issues and things we really believe in, that's kind of tough to take. particularly when 60-something of us lost elections based on the very principles that our president was espousing. >> that is a problem, but elijah i'm going to ask you to do me a favor, okay? i want you to guard against your gag reflex because i don't want you to throw up on the camera. but i agree with jim demint in the fact that i think we should have paid for unemployment benefit extensions, but i also think we should have paid for the tax cuts. even though they will both stimulate the economy, that's less revenue coming into the government, and you know what? we don't have to wait until next year to cut the deficit.
we can do two things at once. we can cut spending and we can extend unemployment benefits and we can extend tax cuts and that's a win/win, but the president didn't take that course. and i just don't understand it. >> but, joe, i'm not going to gag on that. my point was simply that if jim demint wanted the unemployment benefits to be paid for, he should have also wanted the tax cuts to be paid for. that was my point. >> okay. >> all right, congressman cummings, thank you very much. >> thanks, elijah. >> hope you feel better. >> good talking to you. it's going to get ugly. >> i'll stay well. >> all right. tomorrow on "morning joe" governor ed rendell and senate elect pat toomey. >> the pennsylvania showdown. the keystone smacktown. . >> something like that. >> dylan is still there. >> he'll be explaining why he
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dylan, tell us, first, why you're doing it and then what it is. >> simply, you know, everybody hears me sort of rattle on about the trade issues in this country, the energy issues, the health care issues in this country. i'm not the only one who does that. there are a lot of other folks, even if you don't like my solution, but they understand the core issues are screwed up trading policies, screwed up health care policies, and screwed up energy policies which are depriving this country of jobs. one of the people who agrees particularly with the aspect of the screw. energy and trade policies is the ni who runs nocor steel. dan is an incredible leader, forget whether you're into steel or not. what i mean is while it's a nonunion shop that he runs, it's share the pain, share the gain. nobody gets fired. his ceo salary is down 80% over the last couple of years. so he represents a value system
which basically is based on the premise there is no us and them. there is only us and we will solve these problems as a collective engagement and so our idea was to partner with nucor use the underwriting from nucor to go out into the country and devote those resources to educating and identifying and solving problems that go to this over basically 12 cities over four months. >> so we still do make things in america? >> we absolutely still make things. nucor has 22,000 employees and not only does it have 22,000 employees, nucor truly has made meaningful innovations in the way we manufacture steel going back a very long time and beyond that, dan has an incredible history as the ceo in dealing with screwed up trade policies in this country having nothing to do with china when japan -- remember when japan was going to buy new york in the '80s and it was the exact same situation we're in with china except it's
a bigger operation in that the chinese currency was rigged relative to the american currency. in 1985 ronald reagan conducted effectively the plaza accord and they altered the value of the japanese currency by half. in other words, it went from 200 to 100, and so the point is that that created money from asia that came into this country and was invested in this country with people like nucor steel and other auto companies, and that's the sort of thing, that sort of honest engagement, that we need in this country in order to move forward and that's the sort of thing we're going to try to focus on. >> other than your obvious need to get out of town which we all understand -- >> we're starting in seneca falls not only the town because myth logically the film "it's a wonderful life" was based. we have had major challenges in this country for hundreds of years and have addressed them.
do we have a trading issue, do we have an energy issue? do we have a tax code issue? yes. we can solve all these problems and probably create jobs if we decide to actually try to solve them. we're then going to go seal, san francisco, boulder, st. paul, omaha, st. louis -- >> so this starts next week. >> alabama. starts next wednesday. >> seneca falls next wednesday. >> philadelphia, st. louis. >> i can't wait to see it. >> the spirit of america. >> "steel on wheels" tour. dylan ratigan, 4:00 eastern. coming up next, what, if anything, did we learn today.
welcome back to "morning joe." let's go up to new york to figure out what everybody learned. willie, what did you learn? >> i learned the 1989 steel wheels tour has nothing on dylan ratigan steel on wheels tour. >> you know it's much better when you put it on wheels. what did you learn? >> i learned not on the set today but last night if you run into mike barnicle in new york city when he's off set, you can't tell the difference between him and a hobo. >> that's an old term. >> i also learned something about mike barnicle. i'm concerned about all the money printing and the way we're treating our currency so i was trying to find out how mike rolls here in new york. yankees tickets are apparently his